FAA Cuts Red Tape for Air Traffic Controller Hiring

 - February 21, 2008, 9:03 AM

To streamline the application process for air traffic controllers, the FAA has created consolidated screening and testing centers to provide “one-stop shopping” for prospective employees. According to the agency, consolidating security clearances, medical screenings and fingerprinting allows it to slash weeks off the application process. An overwhelming response to air traffic controller jobs led the agency to create the pre-employment processing center, the first of which opened last month in New York. “The FAA put out a job announcement just last month that attracted 3,000 applicants in 15 days,” noted acting FAA Administrator Bobby Sturgell. Job seekers the FAA selects for further consideration are invited to the center, and the first hires to participate in this process received job offers within two weeks and will start at the FAA Academy in Oklahoma City this month. Other Centers will be held in Florida, Atlanta, Fort Worth and Chicago between now and the spring. The FAA expects to hire more than 1,800 new air traffic controllers this year and increase total controller staffing to more than 15,000.